Baghdad (IraqiNews.com) Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi defended the human rights record of his security forces, rebuking Amnesty International for accusing his troops of breaches during the war against Islamic State in Mosul.
During his cabinet’s meeting on Wednesday, Abadi said “our heroes are the defenders of human rights; they sacrifice themselves to rescue civilians”, adding that “the government holds any violator accountable”.
“Human rights organizations should recheck their sources, and should come and see how jubilant are civilians as they welcome Iraqi troops,” said the prime minister. “What was the role of those organizations when Daesh (Islamic State) killed the sons of Mosul and destroyed everything there?”
Abadi stressed that IS members will not be pardoned. “Terrorists should not escape punishment or be pardoned”.
Also on Wednesday, the U.S.-led coalition that backed Iraqi forces in its eight-month campaign in Mosul said Amnesty International’s report, which accused coalition forces of violating international law in Mosul was “irresponsible.”
“War is not pleasant, and pretending that it should be is foolish and places the lives of civilians and soldiers alike at risk,” Col. Joe Scrocca, a coalition spokesman, told The Associated Press.
On Tuesday, Amnesty called on for a commission to investigate crimes against civilians in Mosul by all sides in the battle. The organization accused the Iraqi forces and US-led coalition of carrying out unlawful attack and the use of imprecise and explosive weapons, noting that they “failed to adapt their tactics to this reality and continued to use imprecise and explosive weapons with wide area effects in densely populated urban environments”.
PM Abadi declared victory over IS in Mosul on Monday, and has regularly defended Iraqi troops and allied paramilitary forces against accusations of misconduct on the humanitarian level.